Texas Weekly Migratory Bird Hunting Report – 10/22/2008
North Zone Dove: Dumas and Steadman hunters have seen their best shoots in the afternoon over sunflowers and corn.Good hunts have been posted around Abilene and Knox City over sunflowers and milo. Amarillo has been fair to good over plowed ground. Fields near Paris and Bogota has been fair to good over soybeans and tanks in the afternoon. Fields north of Fort Worth has been fair around goatweed and water. A stronger front packing more ardent north winds this week should deposit a few more mourners across the Red River. The North Zone season ends at sunset Oct. 30. Prospects are fair to good.
Central Zone Dove: Fair to good shoots were posted along the border dividing the Central and South zones. Brownwood, San Saba and Stephenville has been good around roosting trees in the afternoon. Whitewings continue to find corn fields and gravel beds around San Antonio, Del Rio, Uvalde and Castroville. Rice, goatweed and milo have produced half-limit shoots near Hankamer, Winnie, Dayton, Sealy, Hempstead and Brookshire. The Central Zone season ends Oct. 31. Prospects are fair to good.
South Zone Dove: Plenty of doves have been flying in the Rio Grande Valley, but concentrations have been scattered with the recent rains. Outfitters say there is plenty of food and water everywhere. The same holds true for hunters around Port Mansfield. Three Rivers and George West saw good shoots around corn, milo and trees in the afternoon. Fields in El Campo have slowed for whitewings in sunflowers, but hunters are still taking half-limits. More mourners have showed with the recent fronts. Bay City was fair around gravel and grass farms. Conditions remain dry along the coast. Northerly forecasted mid-week should push new birds to the area. The South Zone season runs through Nov. 9. Prospects are good.
Waterfowl: The High Plains Mallard Management Unit duck season opens Oct. 25-26, and prospects look solid. Recent rains associated with front have recharged playa lakes and made the High Plains much wetter. This bodes well for waterfowl. Pintails, shovelers, teal, gadwalls and a few mallards have begun to show. The youth season for the North and South zones runs Oct. 25-26. Plenty of teal, gadwalls, wigeons and pintails in flooded rice fields and leveed ponds on both the east and west side of Houston. Rice prices encouraged farmers to plant more acreage which should help hunting tremendously. Lots of specklebellies showing on the coastal prairie daily with the recent fronts, and expect more on the heels of the front forecasted this week. Northeast Texas has not seen the numbers of ducks that coastal hunters are seeing. Water availability is adequate, but some sloughs and bayous could use another shot of water to float acorns. The North and South zone duck season opens Nov. 1. Reports from Canada indicate an average hatch of snow geese. No confirmed ratio of adult to juvenile geese, but TPWD biologists said they saw more grey birds in the flock compared to a year ago.